Barrier

What is the greatest barrier to trying a new commercial real estate listing service?

 2nd August 2017    David_Perlmutter

We understand that people are reluctant to try new real estate technology, and we want to understand better what those reasons are. That’s why we conducted the following poll, “What is the greatest barrier to trying a new commercial real estate listing service?” The results were quite interesting. Only 24% of the respondents said that their greatest barrier was that they were happy with their existing service. That’s hardly an enthusiastic endorsement for the market leaders.

The largest cohort, 48%, responded that they did not try new a new listing service because of the expense. Another 15% felt that the time to add listings was what’s holding them back from trying a different service. 13% answered Other, but did not specify what in reply comments.

 

 

At QuantumListing, we’re trying to remove the friction points for people to try our service. First, we give a three month trial to new users, and after that, we offer several low cost Premium Membership options for individual users and enterprises. Premium Membership comes with an incredible array of features, and it’s all for the same price. We don’t ask you for your payment information up front, so there is no automatic charge if you don’t opt out. You have to opt in to remain a Premium Member. If you don’t want to add listings, it is free to search all of our users’ listings nationwide.

In order to help prospective users with the other pain point mentioned in the poll, the time to enter their listings, we’ve got a solution for that as well. We’ve started offering users “white glove” set up, where we’ll enter your listings for you. However, even if you add your listings yourself, it does not take much time. Yesterday, we timed Eli the Intern as he added a listing on the QuantumListing.com website. It took him one minute and fifteen seconds to add a listing. This was the fourth listing that Eli added, so he knew what he was doing. He’s also competitive and wanted to put up a good time. Nonetheless, it gives you a good sense of how fast and easy it is.

Ideally, we prefer that you pay for a year’s Premium Membership for us to do the white glove set up, and since we offer all new members three free months, it would give you fifteen months of membership. In this particular case, though, we decided to give this user (actually three users at the same brokerage) white glove set up because we had an interesting conversation with him. This company is situated in Rockland County, NY and are members of the Hudson Gateway Association  of Realtors (HGAR). He puts his commercial listings on HGAR MLS site. He feels that the MLS has one thing going for it that other listing services (including QuantumListing) don’t. They require that the brokers send a signed exclusive agency agreement (and extensions if/when applicable) before they’ll permit a listing on their site. As a result, the information is more accurate and reliable. All of the commercial listing services have bad information of one kind or another, either naming an agent who isn’t the current exclusive agent, or having a property that is no longer available. I wrote about this issue back in November of 2015 in a post, The Fallacy of Accurate Information Services.

One of our objectives at QuantumListing is to keep the cost of Premium Membership low. We don’t have the infrastructure in place to review listing agreements for each of our users’ listings, and since that is not the current standard in commercial real estate, I think there would likely be substantial resistance to requiring that. We are working on a new module that will help with the issue and accelerate user acquisition but I prefer not to discuss it until it’s ready, which will be quite soon.

So, what should be your takeaways from this post? 1) Not many people are happy with their commercial listing services, but don’t want to change because of the expense and time required to change. 2) QuantumListing can alleviate those two pain points. 3) We have something in the works that is really exciting!

Twitter Poll

UPDATE: Other Than Social Media, How Often Do You Use Apps For Business?

 13th July 2017    David_Perlmutter

I was on a conference call on June 27th with Linda Day Harrison from The Broker List, Howard Kline from CRE Radio & TV, Kateri Osborne from The News Funnel and CRE//Tech, and Zach Watkins from RealMassive. Linda asked me the question, why did I decide to pivot QuantumListing away from being an app only to being an app and website. My answer was that most people don’t want to do data entry on their phone.  Additionally, the youngest Millennials are native phone users, but, they are not necessarily in the position of influence in their work environment yet, and can’t necessarily make their older peers use an app. That inspired me to run a poll.

The result is the poll running on Twitter, “Other than social media, how often do you use apps for business?” The early results for the frequency of use of apps for business on at least a weekly basis is 43% as of this writing. Take the poll on Twitter.

 


Later in the day, I remembered that I asked a slightly different question back in late 2015, which was “Do you use any commercial real estate apps?” At the time, only 19% answered yes. Chris Clark, from the CRE Outsider blog, suggested we asked the wrong question. She thought we should have been asking, “How often do you use your mobile phone for CRE purposes?” We did a follow up with that question and 100% of the respondents were daily users.

We’ll post on the results of the poll next week, and after the 4th of July, we’ll run a poll on the frequency of use of social media for business. Enjoy the long holiday weekend!

***UPDATE***  We boosted the Twitter post ($10), we got a total of 90 respondents, and the results changed so that in the end only 31% of the respondents use apps other than social media for business on at least a weekly basis.  The adoption rate has a lot of room for growth! 65% of the respondents almost never or never use apps for business. So, if your business model is to be an app for business, and that’s it, good luck. This will likely change over time as native phone users become a larger part of the workforce.

However, let’s have a look at the follow up poll, “How often do you use social media apps on your phone or tablet for business?” The potential answers were the same, Almost every day, almost every week, at least once a month, and almost never or never. As you can see, the results were quite different than the previous poll.

 

We did the same $10 boost, but got 140 responses. 69% of the respondents use social media for business almost daily, another 8% almost weekly, and 3% at least once a month.  Combined, that’s a total of 80% using social media for business every month. So what does that tell those of us with real estate tech businesses?

An overwhelming majority of our customers are engaged with social media, therefore, we need to be engaged with social media. Looking at some of the metrics from Google Analytics, over a three month period, social media has referred 12% of QuantumListing’s users and accounted for more than 10% of the new registered users. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are responsible for more traffic than Google+ and Instagram (we’re not very active on the latter). I am under the impression that being active on Google+ has an ancillary advantage in that it improves visibility in Google search results, although this is more conjecture than proven fact.

In addition to being active on social media, we need to make our websites and apps social media friendly. We need to make it easy for our users to share our content on social media. In the case of QuantumListing, we proactively share our users listings and profiles on social media. And it is easy for our users to do the same, too. Should we advertise on social media? If you have the budget, probably yes. Targeting for some of the social media channels can be extremely pinpoint accurate. Although I’ve dabbled in advertising on social media, most of the money going into QuantumListing is going to product development. To date, QuantumListing is self-funded, so with limited resources, advertising dollars are scarce. But, given this new insight into business users’ engagement with social media, it may be worth exploring further. Controlling customer acquisition cost is the name of the game.

I’ll let you know if we go down that road, and the results if/when we have them!

Related :
March Madness Bracket

2017 March Madness Viewing Technology Poll

 16th March 2017    David_Perlmutter
2016 Poll Results

2016 March Madness Poll Results

2017 March Madness begins today and we decided to run the same poll on March Madness viewing technology. You can see the post on last year’s results HERE. We started the poll last night and boosted it, so we have 221 votes at the time of this writing, whereas last year we had a total of 43 votes for the entire poll. Last year, smartphones led the results followed by TVs, computers and tablets. So far this year, TV is leading smartphones, but it is probably within the margin of error in polling and possibly related to sample size.

I feel that the large number of people that watch on their smartphone validates our mobile-first philosophy. I find it interesting that tablets have not really gained more traction than they have. Wifi is fairly ubiquitous. Do people scruple against using the office wifi for March Madness, and use their smartphone data plan instead? Or maybe it is just that there is an 8 to 1 ownership ratio of phones to tablets. Whatever the answer to these questions, mobile solutions and mobile responsiveness are no longer optional, they are mandatory.

We’ll update this with the results next week after the poll is over. It runs through Sunday night, March 19th. If you have a Twitter account, please take the poll now. If you don’t get one! And if you are a luddite, or have a different answer than one of our four choices, you can always submit your answer in the comments.

 

 

***UPDATE 3-26-17*** This year, as you can see above, televisions edged out smartphones as the preferred choice for viewing March Madness while at the office by a margin of 43% to 39%. Computers came in third with 12% and tablets a mere 6%. Perhaps the novelty of watching on your phone has worn off and people’s preference for a larger screen answers why tv was this year’s champion. Or perhaps it was just a larger sample size that was responsible. We’ll have to ask the question next year to see if we can spot a long term trend. Computers held steady from year to year at 12%, with tablets declining from 9% to 6%. I can’t wait until next year to see if the results hold steady or continue to shift. As for my bracket, going into the final day of the Elite 8, I’m in 4th place, but don’t expect to win given that I picked Duke as the Champion and they were knocked out last week. Ah well, there’s always next year!

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Twitter Poll: Will Tax Changes Benefit Real Estate?

 9th March 2017    David_Perlmutter

u there?We’ve been conducting a one question Twitter poll, asking “Do you think real estate will benefit from tax changes under the Drumpf administration?”  Results and analysis will be posted later this month in the Quantum Query column in The New York Real Estate Journal. If you have an opinion on this important question for our industry, please let us know in the comments below!

 

 

The poll is closed, but feel free to sound off in the comments!

***UPDATE*** Click HERE to read David Perlmutter’s analysis of the results in the New York Real Estate Journal

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The Social Media Poll

 17th February 2017    David_Perlmutter

With a little time to kill before my connecting flight from Korea to Vietnam, I decided to use it to post a new Twitter poll. The question is “Which social media platform do you think is the most valuable for commercial real estate. The poll has only been up for a few minutes and we already have a few answers. Please take the poll, share it with your friends and colleagues, and feel free to send me replies via Twitter to @QuantumListing, via email to david@quantumlisting.com or just leave comments on this page.

Here’s the poll:

 

 

We’ve gotten some comments via Twitter and want to share them with you.

 

 

(Sarah Malcolm, now Chief Digital Strategist at The News Funnel, was the subject of a feature last March by QuantumListing intern Jack Grossman. You can read that post HERE)

As for me, I’m most active on Twitter. Probably because it is fast and easy. I use Buffer to send listings, and articles to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Occasionally I also send content to Instagram, too, but that takes a couple of additional steps, so that holds me back from using it more. I do have fun goofing around with my kids on Snapchat, but have not set up a separate account for business. Do any of you use Snapchat in a business context.

I know I should use LinkedIn more, but I just have not made it a part of my routine yet. Content syndication through The News Funnel is definitely part of my strategy, too, and although it is not officially social media, it kind of is, and I suspect that is part of the reason Sarah Malcolm is now part of their team.

Tony vanderBeek’s write in candidate, YouTube, is something I use, but mostly for instructional videos. I’ll continue to add to this article, and would love to get your thoughts too. Email me at david@quantumlisting.com, Tweet @QuantumListing or just add to the comments below. I know we all have a lot to learn from each other about how we can benefit from social media.

QuantumListing is the new crowd-sourced real estate listing platform for commercial real estate agents, owner and tenants